You can get a fine of up to Dh500,000 for violating someone’s privacy in the UAE

In a fresh reminder, the UAE Public Prosecution is warning residents that violating individual privacy is a punishable offence in the UAE, with fines up to Dh500,000 imposed on offenders.

Jail time for at least six months is also possible for those who violate privacy laws.

In a recent statement, the Public Prosecution has outlined the acts that comprise an infringement of privacy in the UAE.

What constitutes an acts of privacy infringement?

According to the post, the following are deemed to be offences:

• Eavesdropping, intervention in, or the recording, transferring, broadcasting, or divulgence of talking, communications, or audio or visual material.

• Taking photos of others at any public or private place, or the preparation of electronic photos, or transferring, revealing, copying, or keeping the same.

• The publication of news, electronic photos, photographs, scenes, comments, data, or information, even if real and true, in order to cause harm to a person.

• Taking photos of the wounded, the dead, or the victims of accidents or disasters, and the transfer or publication without a permit of consent from the concerned party.

• Tracing and observation of geographic site data to others, or divulging, transferring, revealing, copying, or keeping the same.

What are the penalties for these offences?

The Public Prosecution says:

“Whoever uses an electronic information system or a means of information technology to make any alteration or processing on a recording, image, or scene, for the purpose of libel or offense against another person shall be sentenced to imprisonment for a duration of not less than a year, and/or fined…not less than Dh250,000 and not more than Dh500,000,”

In summary, the Public Prosecution says a minimum jail sentence of 6 months, or fines ranging between Dh150,000 and Dh500,000, or both, will be imposed when infringing on the privacy of a person without their consent!